I'm not saying that al Qaeda won't win...but it ain't gonna be in days.
The story comes from The Telegraph.
Al-Qaeda's head in Syria claims they are winning civil war
Abu Mohammed al-Golani insists victory for al-Qaeda in Syria will come "in a matter of days"
The head of al-Qaeda's official franchise in Syria claims it is winning the civil war and says that it will reject any outcome of next month's peace talks.
In his first-ever interview, the man known only as Abu Mohammed al-Golani said victory would come "in a matter of days".
"The battle is almost over, we have covered about 70 per cent of it, and what's left is small," he told al-Jazeera, the Qatar-based television channel. "We will achieve victory soon. We pray to God to culminate these efforts with victory."
As President Bashar al-Assad's regime prepares for a peace conference in Switzerland with western governments and Russia, Golani said it would "push the country back 50 or 100 years" into dictatorship.
"We will not recognise any results that come out of the Geneva 2 Conference, nor will the children or women of Syria," he said. "Those taking part in the conference do not represent the people who sacrificed and shed blood. Besides, who has authorised them to represent the people?"
Golani, who comes from Golan, on the border with Israel, has remained anonymous ever since he emerged in early 2012 as the leader of a new group, Jabhat Al-Nusra. It declared allegiance to al-Qaeda and deployed its methods, including suicide bombing.
However, the group has since split, with a second al-Qaeda faction, Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams, becoming perhaps the strongest and certainly the most feared group in parts of northern Syria. In his interview, Golani, who continues to wear a scarf covering his face to preserve his anonymity throughout, does not explain why he has decided to speak now but it may be to regain some of the international attention from ISIS.
In it, he appears to make an almost open appeal for support from Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states. He describes the group's battles in overtly sectarian terms, saying that the war is against Shia Iran and Iranian expansion – one of the main reasons Saudi Arabia, which fears Iranian influence over its own Shia minority, has been so keen to overthrow Iran's ally President Bashar al-Assad.
"If the Assad regime remained in power, which is in the interest of the superpowers and the Safavids, then the next target will be the Arabian Peninsula, now known as Saudi Arabia," he said.
The Safavids were the Persian dynasty that conquered large parts of the Muslim world in the 16th and 17th Century, and the term has been increasingly used by Sunni jihadis derogatively for Iran.
Even before his interview, the peace conference, proposed and debated for months, had lost much of its relevance. Both Jabhat Al-Nusra and ISIS reject it outright, and would not in any case be welcomed by the West.
The other main rebel alliance, the Islamic Front, which probably accounts for more than half of rebel fighters and is seen as more "moderate" despite also demanding a Sharia state for Syria, has also said it will not attend. That leaves the regime to negotiate with political and military opposition leaders with little influence on the ground.
The Islamic Front's members have been in contact with both the United States and Britain, but this week refused to meet Robert Ford, the US envoy to the rebel cause.
: The body of Abbas Khan, the British doctor who died in a Syrian jail, is to be transported today [FRI] to Britain's embassy in Beirut.